The basic necessities of life get more expensive, and the pay check keeps shrinking.

A report released this week by The United Way's ALICE program shows that 43 percent of state residents who are employed have a hard time affording the basic necessities.

ALICE stands for Asset Limited, Income Constrained, Employed. These are individuals who are working, but struggle with basic needs.

The program looked at what the minimum costs would be for a single individual and for a family of four would be for food, transportation, taxes, health care, food and other expenses.

Their estimates for Michigan residents for some of the basic necessities fell far above the minimum standards estimated by the federal government for the poverty line.

The average single person would have to earn about $21,000 a year to make ends meet, while a family of four would have to make about $61,000.

Looking at these charts, I found I pay way more a month for food, housing, transportation and technology (WiFi) than this study bore out, so a part of me wants to find out where they got these figures. Like, where can I get WiFi for $55 a month?

The United Way uses these figures to determine need in local Michigan communities.

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